The 2022-23 target of laying railway tracks for a distance of 4,500 kilometres (12 kilometres per day) has already been achieved, the minister said, adding, "Before 2014, this used to be four kilometres per day. The railways has set a target of laying new railway tracks for a distance of 7,000 kilometres next year. These tracks will include new lines, doubling and gauge conversion". Ministry of Railways has identified 31 railway stations from State of Punjab and Union Territory of Chandigarh for development under the Amrit Bharat Station Scheme. These stations are Chandigarh, Ludhiana, Jalandhar Cantt., Amritsar, Beas, Bhatinda Jn., Jalandhar City, Pathankot Cantt., Abohar, Anandpur Sahib, Fazilka, Firozepur Cantt., Gurdaspur, Kotkapura, Kapurthala, Dhuri, Dhandari Kalan, Malerkotla, Muktsar, Moga, Mansa, Nangal Dam, Patiala, Phagwara, Pathankot City, Phillur, Rup Nagar, Sahibzada Ajeet Singh Nagar (SASN) Mohali, Sangrur, Sirhind, Hoshiarpur, official statement from the Ministry of railways said.
Development/redevelopment/upgradation of Railway Stations is complex in nature involving safety of passengers and trains and requires various statutory clearances from urban/local bodies etc. and these factors affect the completion time. Therefore, no time frame can be indicated.
The government proposed a capital outlay of about Rs 2.40 lakh crore for railways, said Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday while presenting the Union Budget 2023-24 in Lok Sabha.
This budgeted outlay for the railways, Sitharaman told Parliament earlier in the week, is the highest ever and nine times of what it was in 2013.
Vaishnaw while reacting on the Budget 2023-24, earlier in the week told ANI that Finance Minister has allocated Rs. 2.41 lakh crore for Railways which will be a big change for the sector as it will fulfil the aspirations of every passenger.
Highlighting the developments in the sector, the minister said that the Railway is growing every year. Under the 'Amrit Bharat Station' scheme, 1275 stations are being re-developed, whereas, the production of Vande Bharat trains will be revamped.
"Before 2014 only 3 km of track were laid every day, it increased to 12 km of track every day in the current year, and the target for next year is 16 km of track every day," he told ANI earlier in the week.
New stations have been developed, toilets have been constructed, waiting areas have been revamped, new trains have been introduced including Vanade Bharat, and there are significant changes in passenger facilities, he said earlier in the week.
The minister also marked the employment generation in the sector and said that 3,64,000 employments under the railway have been generated in the last 8 years. And the government is already working on 1,45,000 more employments to people of the country, he added on Wednesday.